NOVAE TERRAE #13 - Vol. 2 No. 1 (June 1937)

There are copies of this issue in circulation both with and without the SFA notice - scanned and included on the cover below - at the top. This is an overprinting clearly added to some covers after the issue was complete. The significance of this and the part it played in the feud that was beginning to tear the Leeds group apart at this point will be explored in a future article for RELAPSE.


Copytyping this issue by Jim Linwood.



VOLUME 2.......................NUMBER 1

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Organ of the Science Fiction Association


June 1937.......................Volume 2 Number 1


Editorial note..........................................................................
The Man Who Made Diamonds ............................................
by J. Michael Rosenblum.
Radiant Light .........................................................................
by D. R. Smith
Originality in Science-Fiction...................................................
by Festus Pragnell
Tales of Wonder and Super-Science.......................................
Back Chats............................................................................
by Ted Carnell
This Side of the Atlantic..........................................................
by Maurice Hanson
SFA Monthly Report..............................................................
Reviews in a Nutshell..............................................................
by D.R.Smith and the Editors.







Editor Maurice K. Hanson, 95, Mere Road, Leicester, England.
Associates Dennis A. Jacques, Maurice T. Crowley.

Subscription Rates
12 issues for 1/9, or 2d a copy.
12 issues for 45 cents, or 5 cents a copy.

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Editorial Note

It has been possible for a variety of reasons to produce two issues of "Novae Terrae" for June. The appearance of an extra issue will compensate in part for various of the monthly issues that have been missed in the past. All the usual features and news articles will be found in this issue, while the Supplementary Issue is devoted chiefly to a survey of the influence of scientific fiction upon society.

"The Man Who Made Diamonds"
a review by J.Michael Rosenblum

I recently saw the preview of yet another British scientifilm – "The Man Who Made Diamonds", a First National Production, made at Teddington Studios. As the title implies, a scientist creates artificial diamonds, actually from carbon compounds and a three thousand volt electric discharge. Many views are given of an elaborate -- in fact too elaborate -- private laboratory in which much of the action takes place. Interesting behind the scene views are also given of the workings of the grid system and Scotland Yard, for the story includes the murder of a benevolent scientist and the selfish use of his discovery by an unscrupulous assistant. Of course, a love interest is included, and, some exciting scenes are witnessed on the top of a pylon of the grid system.

On the whole the film is well-written and well-directed but suffers a little from the paucity of the acting. It is certainly "slicker" than the average British production

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by D.R. Smith

The probable connection between radiant energy and life is a subject that has attracted many authors, the most recent being H. G. Wells in his fantasy "Star-Begotten". It is not the obvious life giving radiation, such as infra-red and ultra-violet, that tempts them, but the unknown and highly hypothetical radiation that affects evolution, growth. longevity, and the greatest force of all that first induced the inert carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen compounds to form living cells.

Perhaps the best story to appear in the magazines on the subject was "Seeds of Life" by John Taine, where laboratory produced rays related in form to cosmic radiation produced many extremes of evolutionary change, from a flock of monstrous semi-gaseous spider-things to a genius a millennium in advance of his own, time. Another genius was created by the evolutionary effects of cosmic rays in "The Man Who Evolved" by Edmond. Hamilton, a cyclic adventure in futurity characteristic of its author. Another idea worthy of comment is found in "The Death Cloud" by David R. Daniels, a ray evolving earthly life in such a manner that it could enjoy an atmosphere strongly tainted - with chlorine.

More popular with the thriller writer are the rays which develop gigantic creatures. Characteristic of this type of story was "Giants of the Ray" by Tom Curry, the rays involved being those of radium. This is a typical example of unbridled scientific license, for all available evidence indicates that the rays emitted by radioactive elements are destructive to all living calls. Indeed it would be difficult to produce a logical argument in favour of any ray affecting growth directly. The better course is to remain discreetly silent as to the character of the rays, as did Miss Stone in "Cosmic Joke", an original plot based on the difficulties caused by a world-wide outbreak of giganticism.

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"Vital" rays, as Harl Vincent called them in "Old Crompton's Secret" are great favourites. Sometimes the actually create life, as in "Creatures of the Light" by Sophie W. Ellis, produce immortality, as for Nathan Schachner's " Eternal Dictator", assist the process of healing, as in "An Adventure in Futurity" by Clark Ashton Smith, but they are all bound together by the same lack of explanation, which is a merit rather than a defect. Perhaps the most logical, story written on the subject was "Master of the Genes" by Edmond Hamilton, a scientist experimenting on the genes of unborn human beings instead of the fruit flies used by less drastic experimenters. The prize for humour goes to a person calling himself "Kenny McDowd", for his burlesque "The Marble Virgin". Here a scientist operated with rays on a statue and turned it into a living girl.

Associated with the rays affecting the physical side of life are the rays affecting the mental side. The processes of thought are as much a mystery today as they were ten thousand years ago, and it is a debatable point whether thought can be discussed in terms of radiation at all. E.E.Smith was logical in placing "sixth order" as thought, as the highest type of radiation his fertile imagination could conceive, though he overlooked the "mechanical educator" invented by Dunark of Osnome before the idea of "orders" had been brought forward. Campbell, partly from convenience no doubt, placed thought on a level above even the galaxy-generating powers of Arost. Telepathy is so very useful to our interplanetary travelers, however, we can not discourage its use, and indeed, looking at the available evidence form all angles, weighing this against that, adding magicians and taking away professors reading between the lines and applying statistical laws of probability, one is forced to the conclusion that there is something in it. But it is not an idea to be loosely used, and machines for actually developing, or producing thought rays or rays hostile to thought, had better be confined to fantasy.

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Hypnotic rays, in particular, as used in "The Hours" by Morton Brotman, are suspected of being illogical, even though hypnotists do use twinkling mirrors in their demonstrations.

This may be said of all "life rays", that they may add to the entertainment of the story, but they do not add to its logic.

Originality in Science-Fiction
by Festus Pragnell

No doubt like many others, I have often wondered why it was that, while science-fiction editors were crying out as loudly as they could for originality and new ideas, it was possible to read their magazines for a whole year without finding more than one new idea in the lot.

I sent them stories full of originality, and they returned them to me: I tried writing stories that were as hackneyed as I could make them, and they were big successes, the only objections raised by readers being to those original parts that had slipped in by accident, such as the use of diamond armour in "The Green Man of Graypec".

Now I am puzzled no longer. I have discovered the reason. It is because just those people who cry out the loudest for original ideas are the quickest to sweep aside contemptuously any new idea they do come across because it does not fit in with their preconceived prejudices.

This seems to have been the reaction of Mr. D. R. Smith, a contributor usually so readable and well-informed, to my suggestion that in the future the human race might split into to races, one strong and lively and occupying itself with physical work and sports, etc., while the other became gigantic and occupies itself with brainwork.

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David Keller, M.D., thinks that moral qualities are inherited from our parents, and apparently would have us execute or sterilize all criminals: Mr. Smith goes to the opposite extreme and, argues that small men are small only because they have not been fed or cared for so well as those who become big men. I do not know which view is the more absurd.

The probability is that our health depends upon food and care in childhood, our moral qualities upon the people in whose care we grew up, and our physical qualities such as colour of the, eyes, tallness, etc., upon heredity. This of course is a very complicated question, and it would take a book, not a short article, to go into it properly.

I'm afraid that Mr. Smith does not know much about agricultural workers; farmers may have well-stocked larders, but the diet of the average agricultural labourer can only be described as starvation. City men never know such dire poverty as do countrymen.

But when I read that factory workers need strength rather than quickness of movement, I gasp. Where did you get that queer idea Mr. Smith? In a blacksmith's shop?

Logical as Mr. Smith's argument may be, I shall still believe that the future will see the human race divided into two parts, as I have described, one large and one small. Other things being equal, a large brain is stronger than a small one, and can do more work. I know you can mention names, and claim that their possessors were small men, but this is only a statistical rule, and to statistical rules there are many exceptions. The sizes of men's heads vary greatly, even if you cou1d quote the size of, say, Einstein's hat, that would not prove that he had a smaller brain than another man who took a larger size. In any case, are such people as Einstein and Sir James Joans so much more intelligent than the average man? I doubt it. They are just specialists.

The last sentence of Mr. Smith's article reveals a certain ignorance. It is just the dreamers who are most alive to worldly affairs, being loss concerned with their immediate surroundings.

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It is a sober fact that a British magazine of science-fiction bearing the title "Tales of Wonder and Super Science", and containing stories entirely by English authors, is to be published here on June 29th. The first of its kind over produced on this side of the Atlantic, and priced at one shilling, it is issued by The World's Work (1913), Ltd., of Kingswood, Surrey, as a serious attempt to fulfill the demand that exists amongst British fantasy fans for a genuine scientific fiction magazine.

"Tales of Wonder" is entirely compiled and edited on behalf of the publishers by Walter H. Gillings, the science-fiction enthusiast of Ilford, Essex, who for many years past has been trying to interest British publishing firms in the scope that exists in this field.

The magazine has been designed to discover whether there are sufficient science-fiction readers to justify a permanent British magazine of this type, and. if not, whether sufficient of the general public will be attracted to science-fiction to make up the deficiency. If enough copies of this single issue are sold to prove there is a considerable demand for such stories, it is practically certain that further issues will follow, and probable that a regular magazine will eventually be published.

The Managing Editor of The World's Work, Mr. Chalmers Roberts, who is a native of Texas, has often thought of trying out modern science-fiction in this country, but it was not until a few months ago when he was approached by Walter H. Gillings, that the question was seriously tackled. Being in touch with all the British authors of science-fiction familiar to readers of American magazines, and having made a special study of presenting fantasy to the British public, in magazine form, Gillings was given the job of planning and editing the experimental issue.

(Continued on 14)

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Passed on by Ted Carnell

TALES OF WONDER—Britain's new pro production (full details elsewhere in this issue) seems a tale of wonder that we should have it at last. Spare a thought, when perusing your copy for the weeks of hard labour put in by Editor Gillings planning this production to meet many different angles of British fans and readers. Remember that upon success of first issue rests the fate of future issues, so panhandle it to all your friends and get them to buy copies too.

What a year for British science-fiction this has been. Starting with SFA formation, we have since had MODERN WONDER for the very youthful, with its "League of Science" (cribbed from WONDER's SFL?). H.G.Wells' "Star-Begotten" as well as Olaf Stapledon's "Star Maker", and Eric Russell's two fine yarns in ASTOUNDING with "Seeker of Tomorrow", collaborating with Leslie Johnson, to appear in July.

DEMISE OF ISA—American notes "All Quiet on Western Front" (this column last issue) out-of-date news before publication. New York's famous fan organization "International Scientific Association" becalmed in doldrums after February convention popped things up by breach, between science and science-fiction groups. Report states small group headed by Jim Blish and Walt Kubilus, favour ISA as science-hobbyist society, but majority of NY members decided to dissolve the partnership, paying back any outstanding subs. Trouble brought to a head when Bill Sykora, President, resigned office shortly after John Michel, Vice-President, had resigned.

ISA, originally called "International Cosmos Science Club", (name changed. 1935) has been a correspondence science club for a number of years, during which NY Headquarters Branch have fired several experimental rockets with various degrees of success. Noted also for composing "war" (scienceflictional) songs and hymns, ISA now sing own swan song.

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FATE OF FANTASY MAGAZINE-- Details now available state Willis Conover was ejected from staff of new "Fantasy" by colleagues Stickney and. Bogart, since then rights to mag have been sold to a "mail order business". What the latter means exactly, has not yet been made clear.

FAN MAGS--Claire P. Beck's "Critic" leans more and more toward interesting opinions and discussions by various fans. Latest (May) issue again contains words and music by colleague D.R. Smith, of this magazine, who has had a number of exclusives in the "Critic" besides reprints from "Novae Terrae". Claire P. (masculine to you) states that very few issues have appeared without a slating for Fearn. Evidently John isn't liked West of the Rookies, though some say west of the Atlantic. Article by John Michel in March "Critic" gave personal opinion of March ASTOUNDING. It is now revealed that Michel didn't pen the missive, but hoax was perpetrated by Fred Pohl of New York, at least Fred is credited with the honour.

Latest (June) "Science Fiction Fan", together with mystery October 1936 issue, arrived this week. October number was last of printed issues and had not been sent out, being withhold for unknown reasons. June issue contains neat heckto'd drawings but little else except forecast of July ASTOUNDING (how does Wiggins do it?). This forecast is far in advance of current issues of ASTOUNDING and gives complete list of' yarns a month in advance. Must have a personal hook-up with editor Tremaine. Also strange fact that Wiggins refuses subscriptions under full year. Take the lot or keep your nickels.

Latest issue of Chicago's "14 Leaflet" contain photos of nineteen of "the boys from the Loop" including the Binder brothers and Florence Reider as well as notorious magazine letter writer Jack Darrow (real name Clifford Kornoelje).

CONVENTIONS--New York's fanfare announcing World Science Action Conference in 1939 gave others same idea. To offset Eastern States cornering all the praise, Western States, California and others, seriously thinking about celebrating 1934 San Francisco Exhibition with similar

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Science-Fiction Convention, including the Hollywood, Oakland and San Francisco fan groups, reckoned to be able to muster over a hundred fans and authors to the rally.

Idea is contagious -- recently London's Three Musketeers of science-fiction formed rough outline of SFA Annual Conference, probably to be held in London this year about December.

OLAF STAPLEDON--Olaf Stapledon's "Last and First Men' has now appeared in the Penguin (6d.) series (number A3 in "Pelican" group) Complete and unabridged "Pelican" group dual with science, history, etc., also containing "The Mysterious Universe" by Sir James" and "Essays in Popular Science" by Huxley. Look for the blue cover. Exclusive scoop in "Scientifiction" No. 3, is interview with Dr. Stapledon as well as review by John Benyon Harris of this author's latest thought-variant.

NEW ZEALAND SF BULLETIN--Item in latest"14 Leaflet" mentions certain fan mags heard about but never seen, amongst which is New Zealand "Bulletin". Publicity for latter originated from this column (Jun., 1936 issue). NZ SFA was formed by two fans, Noel S. Jenkin and Norman S. Patten of New Plymouth in January 1935. They launched a mimeographed "Bulletin" explaining aims and ideals (two issues, February and March 1935) but project failed through lack of enthusiasm. Only copy of "Bulletin" to leave NZ is in my collection.

OF FANS—Name often occurring lately is of Los Angeles fan, Vernon Wilfred Harry. Lately joined SFA and BIS and is pen-pal of Harold Gottliffe, Leeds, and Leslie Potts, Surrey. Despite antipathy of certain American fans toward Vernon, latest photo of him to reach here shows likable countenance and. agreeable smile.

While on Hollywood gossip -- Dame Rumour once stated Forrie Ackerman never answered correspondence unless stamped addressed envelope was enclosed. Took idea up to see if true. It was. He doesn't. (Colleague Carnell's generalization too sweeping; I, at any rate, have found the reverse to be true--Editor.)

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REPLY TO "PLANTAGENET"-- Pen-name smacketh of 12th Century, though your thoughts appear to dwell in. Weinbaum's "Worlds of If". For fourteen months this column has appeared in some shape or form and I have never realised that it was read by other eyes except those of the Editors. Thanks, Mr. Plant. We have a public.

From many possibilities of the future I drew one imaginative happening but did not state that I believed what I wrote. Far from it, anything can happen during the next hundred years, including disintegration of earth. How can you enjoy science-fiction yarns when each story has a different hypothesis of the future? You don't add up correctly. Apart from this short reply, the Editor admirably answered your letter last month.


"England is overwhelmed by a mysterious deadly radio signal that outs out the usual radio programmes and kills ten persons, Home Office inquiries reveal that similar broadcasts have been.....shaking battleships to pieces and it is realised that somewhere in the country there is a scientist who has found a deadly weapon…So Captain Edward Folton-Slingsby, of the Secret Service, is told to find this man……He is warned that Paul Sotchi, agent of a foreign power is already on the track of the mystery man……and the foreign agent leaves for Little Caldor, a tiny hamlet in a lonely corner of Essex where, posing as a squire of the old school, Hugh Calder is trying to prevent an arterial road being driven through the home of his ancestors. ….." It seems difficult to believe that this is a synopsis of a serial in "The Passing Show" (The Broadcast Murders) by W.J. Passingham. It is a far cry from the unhackneyed material usually used in that journal to lonely corners of Essex (of which that county seems to be solely composed.), but the story will doubtless be sought for by collectors of scientific fiction…..Cartoon-strip connoisseurs should have noted that Pip, Squeak and

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Wilfred are steadily working through the themes of H.G.Wells. A casual glance at the "Daily Mirror" of June 5th, reveals Pip preparing a bath of. luminous paint to catch Auntie, the invisible penguin……An equally casual glance at "The Wizard" for May 29th reveals "The Lost Twenty-Seven Minutes" in which this amount of time is abstracted from the lives of various people and a story based on a stratosphere ascent……"Ten Poplars" by Helen Magriska is an "unusual story centering on the discovery of a treatment for restoring youth....Her tale never flags and is written through-out with warm human sympathy and understanding", (Constable 7/6)………….. "Swastika Night" by Murray Constantine (Gollancz 7/6) portrays the future of seven hundred years hence when it is a sign of quality in a motor-mechanic that he should have a month's leave to spend in Germany......."and there'll be tea for two for me and. you up on Mars" has all the hallmarks of a lyric of a current dance-tune in which it actually occurs….The criticism of Olaf Stapledon's "Star-Maker" (Methuen 8/6) in "The Times" includes: "One is rarely moved to predict the probable life of any book, yet both its subject and. the plain grandeur of its prose predict that ‘Star Maker' must automatically enter the small group of modern classics". "The Spectator" counters: "Stapledon, however, though his aim is speculative is writing a novel not a philosophical treatise. He has not to my mind quite brought it off, but has at least given his readers something to think about." But the "Times Literary Supplement" review remarks "The too-modest author says it is remarkably bad by the standards of the novel". But nobody will judge it by that standard……..At one time during the month H G Wells' "Star-Begotten" was the best seller of the week closely followed by "Sugar in the Air" by E. C. Large (Johnathan Cape 7/6) telling of laboratory experiments in the production of "sunsap", a synthetic form of sugar the carbon. dioxide of the atmosphere, and of the various methods used by big business to exploit it……………………………………………………………………

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Tales of Wonder and Super-Science (Continued)

Gillings has selected the contents of the issue from many manuscripts with a view to attracting the attention of magazine readers who are not used to American scientific fiction, and at the same time making an appeal to all established fantasy enthusiasts. It is, indeed, a real science-fiction magazine, and not a half-hearted attempt at one, Mr. Gillings informs us, and "Though it is only an experiment for the moment, it will give British fantasy fans the chance for which they been waiting so long, to demonstrate their enthusiasm and support the venture whole-heartedly, remembering that on its success may depend the future of British science fiction in magazine form".

Practically all Britain's best-known authors are represented in "Tales of Wonder", and two of them contribute two stories each. The cover illustration is taken from the story "Superhuman!" by Geoffrey Armstrong (who is actually John Russell Fearn). The longest, and perhaps the most advanced story in the issue is "Invaders from the Atom" by Maurice G. Hugi while Fearn has another story included "Seeds of Space", telling of a Martian weed menace. The new author, Eric Frank Russell, contributes "The Prr-r-eet", a story of a visitor from the void, in his own breezy style.

Festus Pragnell appears with "Man of the Future" and "Monsters of the Moor", the latter being under the name of Francis Parnell. John Benyon (Harris) contributes a humorous story of artificial life entitled "The Perfect Creature" and Benson Herbert's "Control Drug" is reprinted from "Wonder Stories" under the title "Elixir of Death", this being the only reprint in the magazine. Finally "Revolt on Venus", by W.P.Cockcroft relates the adventures of a first interplanetary expedition.

(American fans wishing to obtain copies should send direct to The World's Work Ltd., The Windmill Press, Kingswood, Surrey, England.)

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The Science-Fiction Association
Monthly Report

NEW MEMBERS: We have pleasure in welcoming as Honorary Members of the society Professor A.M. Low and W. Olaf Stapledon. Professor A. M.Low is editor of the popular scientific monthly magazine "Armchair Science" (in which at present his science-fiction novel "The Murchison Mystery" is running serially). He was also the author of "Space" in "Scoop", and has written several books on the future and modern inventions. He as done much to popularise science and science-fiction, while rocketry enthusiasts will need no reminding that he is President of the British Interplanetary Society. In accepting the Honorary Membership he said "I am a great believer in the importance of science-fiction, for there is no doubt that it attracts people who would otherwise be unaware of the beauty of science, but it gives rise to so many imaginative ideas which so often become fact later on."

Olaf Stapledon needs no introduction to readers of the more advanced science-fiction. His story "Last and First Men", relating the whole history of the human race, has received manifold praise from numerous authorities including H. G. Wells. It was recently published in the "Pelican" series, together with a short autobiography and portrait of the author. His other science-fiction works include "Odd John" and "Last Men in London", both published by Methuen. His new magnum opus, described as a "cosmological fantasy" and entitled "Star-Maker" appears on Juno 24th.

Other new members are A. Bloom (Birkenhead); E.J. Carnell (Plumstead); Miss A. Feather (Anglesey); J. B. Jepson (Nuneaton); J. I. Stevenson (Hull); D. A, Wollheim (New York); and S. Youd (Eastleigh).

BACK-MEMBER SUPPLY SERVICE: This service has been successful in supplying many members with back numbers of American science-fiction magazines. Now members requiring such should send us a list of what they need.

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We contact various agents in this country and America and notify the member when the required copies are traced. If the member wishes to purchase the books we can make the necessary arrangements, but there is no obligation to buy even after the books are located.

It should be noted that although many post 1932 issues can be obtained at fairly low prices, earlier copies are becoming more and more difficult to obtain. We have been able to supply many early copies at prices of less than 1/- (having obtained them from British fans selling their collections) but it will soon be necessary to rely entirely on American supplies. A prominent U.S. fan informs us: "American dealers` prices on Science Wonders are between. 40 cents and one dollar…… Among dealers the cost of old Wonders and. Amazings is high, and those for Air and. Science Wonder unreasonable.....My Amazings run intermittently back to 1927. Older than that they cost one dollar each, which is preposterous."

We shall therefore be glad to hear from anyone with science-fiction magazines for sale.

LIBRARY: We have been considering tentative schemes for the inauguration of a library. It is proposed that this should consist mainly of British scientific fiction books - not American magazines - together with club publications, and oddities such as author's manuscripts, British journals containing science-fiction, etc. It is also proposed that the library should have a sub-section of purely scientific books.

Mr. E.C. Williams of London has kindly offered to act as Librarian, with the assistance of several other London members. Three provisional rules are: (1) Members wishing to use the library must submit a book not already possessed by the library. In the event of a member losing a book the former book will become the property of the owner of the lost book. (2) Members may withdraw their own books at any time, after giving suitable notice and on payments of the necessary postage. (All members are requested to contribute as many books as possible). (3) The librarian will issue lists from time to time, giving the titles of books in the library.

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A member wishing to borrow a book recorded in the lists, should, provided they have submitted at least one book to the library, notify the librarian and enclose a small fee (not more than 6d, the exact amount to be decided later). The Librarian will forward the book, which must be returned within two weeks after receiving it. The fee will be used for postage and incidental expenses, any profit accruing being used to buy new books.

Some thirty-five science-fiction books and some sixty text-books have already been promised by several members. Before, however, the scheme is actually put into operation we wish to know if other members will be willing to contribute books (and not entirely the works of Wells or Verne!) and if, when the library is formed, they will make good use of it. All members are therefore asked to let us know, their opinion of this scheme, to make suggestions and comments, and should they be willing to contribute books and send us a list of the titles. If members will do this without delay we should be able to make a definite announcement next month.


J.Stephenson, 35, 19th Avenue, Endike Lane, HULL wishes to correspond with any "embryo Pauls or Wessos, or anyone interested in fantascience illustrating".

L. Turner, 45, Maltravers Terrace, Sheffield 2, wishes to correspond with any members interested in the making of telescopes.

OFFICIALS: It is suggested, to save time when writing, the letters should be sent direct to the various officials who are: General Secretary - D,W. F. Mayer, 20 Hollin Park Road, LEEDS,8. Assistant Secretary – H. Warnes, 5 Florist Street, Leeds 3. Treasurer - G. A. Airey, 9 Gledhow Park Drive, Leeds 8.

PUBLICATIONS: The Summer issue of TOMORROW will be published during July and will contain a leading article on the subject of amateur authors. The British Science-Fiction Bibliography will be published soon after. We will be glad to hear from anyone who can supply information of value to either publication.

TALES OF WONDER AND SUPER SCIENCE: We presume it is unnecessary to request members to give all the support they can to this magazine.

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Reviews – In a Nutshell
compiled by D.R.Smith and Editors

Ratings: Very good, good, fairly good, very fair, fair, readable, poor.


Cover: It is interesting to see a cover by Wesso again, but it is not a good effort. Illustrations: None are impressive; neither is the debut of Jack Binder.

EARTH-SPIN by Natt Schachner FAIR

Not at all eventful, though the basic, idea is original and interesting.

Mr. Smith writes: " ‘Night' was good, but this is far better. This is a scientific fantasy such as we dream of. Prob¬ably the best short story yet published in the magazines. VERY GOOD. The Editors are not entirely in agreement.

Slight touch of humour.

An interesting plot and a new one, though perhaps not a good one.

This story contains several ingenious ideas in a praise¬worthy account of the first space-flight.

For the most part an incoherent muddle of 'advanced' space-time ideas.

Thy plot, which is musty in any case, is insufficient to give the story the necessary point and interest.

The illustrations are amusing; the possibilities of the plot are not realized.

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COSMIC DISCOVERY by John W.Campbell Jr. (Non-fiction)
"……but if I go on for ever"; nevertheless always GOOD.


SCIENCE DISCUSSIONS letters from John W.Campbell Jr. and P. Schuyler Miller are included.


THE IRON WORLD by Otis Adelbert Kline POOR
Incredibly hackneyed, extremely implausible and generally inferior.

The science is by no means impeccable and the charac¬ters are stereotyped; slightly above The Binder's average, nevertheless.

THE DOUBLE MINDS by John W.Campbell Jr. GOOD
Similar to "The Brain Eaters of Mars".

Rather better than the usual rifts and vortices.

SPACE MIRROR by Edmond Hamilton FAIR
Uses the idea often suggested by astronauts but rarely seen in fiction. The action is mainly hokum.

Too casual and generally featureless.

An interesting idea is very effectively presented, and the story is almost worthy of a "good".

Moral: Never plan to destroy the earth by means of a "nimbus of new magnetism" to attract the sun's radiation.

SPACEWARD by P.E. Cleator GOOD (Non-fiction)
Contains few new ideas, but is very entertainingly written with plentiful comments on the human aversion to progress.

Cover: By Wesso, and far more competent than any previous one but alarmingly sensational and pseudo-scientific. Illustrations: Mainly by Wesso, and improving. Scientifacts are rather more interesting than usual, the film review is written by one who knows something about films. ZARNAK continues.